Bundi Travel Guide

Bundi Overview

The Hindu holy town of Bundi (otherwise known as the ‘city of stairwells’ in recognition of the ancient water storage pits that are dotted around the town)  sits on the route between Ajmer and Kota and offers visitors a peaceful and picturesque break from the noise and pollution of these cities.

 
The main town retains some hustle and bustle in the form of the market stalls, selling everything from fruit to small bags of curd to drink, as well as the relentless traffic that tears along whatever side of the road seems to be the most convenient. Unlike holy towns like nearby Pushkar, Bundi is a little more relaxed when it comes to serving foods like egg and meat and beer is both easier to obtain and restaurants are more comfortable when it comes to having it on display.
 
Much quieter is the tourist area – a peaceful plot on the north bank of the Nawal Sagar lake - and where most of the town’s guest houses are located. The traffic here is far less heavy although the occasional cavalcade of motorbikes and rickshaws is still to be expected, just with less frequency. 
 
Wild pigs, stray dogs and inquisitive monkeys wander the narrow, dusty roads in search of food while locals push brightly-colored wooden carts that offer food and drink, signaled by their ringing of a bell, making for a lively and enjoyable atmosphere.
 
Bundi itself is a jumble of flat-roofed houses, the majority of which are painted a deep sky blue out of respect to the Lord Shiva and has remained here since 1193AD when Prithviraj Chaunhan was defeated by Mohammed Ghowi. The town is a truly idyllic location that offers no shortage of places to visit. Visitors may want to take advantage of the motorbikes on hire (around 250 rupees per day) to reach some of the attractions that are a little way outside of the town as it will often prove cheaper than hiring a rickshaw.
Guest houses in Bundi are generally family-run affairs which make for a pleasant atmosphere and, more often than not, any number of different priced rooms that range from basic doubles to luxury apartments. Off-season (April/May) while the hottest time to visit Bundi can also be the cheapest as a lack of tourists makes for better negotiations when it comes to securing a room and a 50% discount is not hard to secure. 

Things to do in Bundi

Bhimlet Waterfalls

Located around 35km from the town itself, the Bhimlet waterfalls are well worth wither hiring a motorbike or stretching to a rickshaw (around 700 rupees there and back.)
In the heart of the surrounding rocky desert, the ground suddenly gives way to reveal a large canyon which is filled with lush vegetation and a stunning freshwater lake that is perfectly safe for visitors to swim in.
 
The Shiva temple that sits a little way up the steps leading down to the water is a enjoyable distraction with its own supply of fresh water but visitors are warned not to spend too long here after dark as the lake is a popular place for wild animals, including bears, who come here for an evening drink.
 
Kipling House
The place where the great British author wrote such classics as ‘Kim’ is a beautiful open plan house that is both a peaceful place to spend a day as well as a fitting tribute to its famous previous owner. The house sits on the banks of an enormous freshwater lake where locals bathe in the shadow of the nearby Shiva temple as well as scrubbing laundry on the stone ghats that flank either side. The lake is rather polluted however so it is unlikely that a swim is in order. Free admission makes for another fine reason to explore this location.
 
Taragarh Fort or 'Star Fort'
The Taragarh Fort has sat overlooking Bundi since construction was completed in 1354 AD. These fascinating remains are really quite extensive and as well as offering panoramic views of the town below are a detailed insight into the military history of the area. Admission to the palace (also in the ground of the fort) is 40 rupees but otherwise this whole area is free to be explored at visitor’s leisure. The man renting sticks for 10 rupees each on the road up to the fort may seem like he is embarking on a bad business venture but the fearsome red monkeys are very large in numbers within the ruins and a good strong stick to scare them off with may prove invaluable.
 

Hotels in Bundi

Haveli Parihar (opposite the Gopol temple. P: Bundi – 323001)

A nice spacious family-run guest house, the Haveli Parihar has a decent restaurant, a roof top terrace complete with a view of the lake. Prices start at around 300 rupees for a basic double.
 
Haveli Govindam
This particular guest house has some nice features including a large communal balcony as well as an on-site restaurant with reasonably priced food. The water supply can be a bit of an issue as the monkeys have recently figured out how to turn it off but this is no great hassle. Prices start at 300 rupees for a basic double (no A/C.)
 
Hadee Rani Guest House

Located a little way out of the tourist area, the Hadee Rani Guest House is well sheltered from the noise of the traffic outside and offers a range of decent rooms with excellent on-site facilities including a laundry service and an on-call doctor. Rooms start at 300 rupees for a basic double (no A/C.)

Bundi Weather

Bundi Travel Resources

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